Fat is flavour, and a good cut of wagyu has this in spades.
The Japanese call it “Shimofuri”, a mesmerising web of frosted snow spread across a slab of raw, red meat.
Word has it that the cows in Japan, living in serene environments and sheltered comfort, are fed sake, sang to and massaged expertly – thus the top-notch quality of meat.
Here are 6 restaurants in Singapore that boast wagyu from different prefectures on their menu.
Best for: Ozaki wagyu
Rogue farmer Manuharu Ozaki produced award-winning A5 grade wagyu for 10 years, until he took issue with beef that relied solely on good marbling.
Instead of the usual pre-packed high calorie feed given to cows bred for wagyu, Ozaki adds charcoal and seaweed to his feed to keep his cattle in prime health and to produce leaner, though still well-marbled, beef.
At Ushidoki, the chef imports a whole head of cattle from the single farm in Miyazaki, and showcases different cuts of Ozaki wagyu through a beef tongue consommé to a 3-kind wagyu sashimi moriawase and a sliver of wagyu rump wrapped around botan ebi and sea urchin.
57 Tras St, Singapore 078996
NEXT: Sakurazaka →
Best for: Joshu wagyu
It’s all about the art of shabu shabu (Japanese hot pot) at Sakurazaka. Fun fact: “shabu-shabu” is so named as an imitation of the swishing sound of meat when swirled around in the hotpot.
This warmly-lit restaurant gives the option of adding on a 100gram serve of Joshu wagyu ribeye to your set dinner. The buttery slice of wagyu owes its flavour to the green mountains and clear waters of the Gunma prefecture, where the Japanese black cattle are raised.
Swish the thin slices of marbled meat in the ago dashi (dried flying fish) broth that lends a mild sweetness to the cooked meat.
24 Greenwood Ave, Singapore 289221
NEXT: Edge →
Best for: Ohmi wagyu
Japanese history has it that it wasn’t until the emperor tried Ohmi in 1872 – black Japanese cattle raised near the banks of Lake Biwa in the Shiga prefecture – and enjoyed it so much, he lifted the ban on beef consumption in the country.
Over at Edge’s Sunday champagne brunch, guests get to help themselves to as much Ohmi wagyu at the live grill section as they can eat. An indulgent Sunday brunch worth toasting to, for sure.
Level 3 Pan Pacific Singapore, 7 Raffles Boulevard, Singapore 029595
NEXT: Ikyu →
Best for: Toriyama wagyu
Known as an ‘umami’ wagyu, Toriyama comes from Showa village in Gunma prefecture, and is evenly-marbled but not excessive, thanks to the cattle living at high altitudes and having their diets monitored closely.
At Ikyu, executive chef Takuma Seki has a grain-fed Toriyama A4 full-blood wagyu on his menu, served lightly grilled over charcoal.
5 Yong Saik St, Singapore 168643
NEXT: Fat Cow →
Best for: Saga grade wagyu
Saga wagyu from its eponymous prefecture has to be certified. The beef must be from a black-haired Japanese cow, bred in an agricultural association designated farm, and must meet a mark above seven out of 12 in the Beef Marbling Standard set by Japan Meat Grading Association.
Raised under these strict conditions in a peaceful climate, the fine-grained marbled meat is simply grilled to medium doneness (so it won’t purely taste like a stick of butter in the mouth) and served as it is at Fat Cow.
#01-01 Camden Medical Centre, 1 Orchard Boulevard, Singapore 248649
NEXT: Emporium Shokuhin →
Best for: Mizayaki wagyu
Known for its cherry-red hue and succulent buttery flesh, the A5 Miyazaki beef from Miyazaki prefecture on the southern island of Kyushu is brought in by new Japanese gourmet grocer Emporium Shokuhin.
The beef is available at the in-house dining concepts Takujo Japanese Dining and Gyuu+ Yakiniki Grill, but here’s the best part: cuts like Miyazaki ribeye and shabu shabu are available for retail at the deli. The perfect excuse to load up your basket, head back home and savour the rich fatty goodness for days.
#01-18 Marina Square, 6 Raffles Boulevard, Singapore 039594
NEXT: Ushidoki Wagyu Kaiseki →
By Meryl Koh, The Peak Magazine, last updated November 2016
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